Beverly Hills Hotel Exec Says Hotel Is Being 'Unfairly Picked On'

6:31 AM PST 05/06/2014 by THR Staff
Chris Godley
Protesters outside the Beverly Hills Hotel

UPDATED: The CEO of parent company the Dorchester Collection insists the Hollywood hotspot, which has lost several high-profile events in recent days over the company's connection to an anti-gay law instituted in Brunei, has done nothing wrong.

Amid protests against the Beverly Hills Hotel, the CEO of parent company the Dorchester Collection is saying the Hollywood hotspot doesn't deserve to be targeted despite the company being owned by the Sultan of Brunei, who has instituted a severe new penal code based on Sharia law that calls for death by stoning for homosexuals and adulterers.

Christopher Cowdray told CBS This Morning that the hotel "has done absolutely nothing wrong."

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"I feel totally unfairly picked on," Cowdray said in a report that aired on Tuesday's edition of the morning show. "All they are doing is hurting a local business."

Cowdray declined to comment on Brunei's new law.

What began as a grassroots movement two weeks ago, with designers asking their Instagram and Twitter followers to boycott the Dorchester Collection of hotels, which the Beverly Hills Hotel is part of, has gained momentum, with prominent organizations dropping plans to hold dinners and fundraisers at the landmark hotel.

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On Tuesday, the Beverly Hills city council passed a resolution urging the Government of Brunei and governments with similar anti-gay policies to divest their property investments in the city, The Beverly Hills Courier reported.

On Monday, the Motion Picture & Television Fund said that it would not hold its glitzy Oscar-eve fundraising party, the Night Before, at the hotel. Other events that have moved from the hotel to other locations include the Feminist Majority Foundation's Global Women's Rights Awards, the Independent School Alliance for Minority Awards and a Teen Line fundraiser honoring Sony Pictures Entertainment co-chairman Amy Pascal. The Outgiving Conference, a meeting of LGBT donors, was the first event to pull up stakes. And the Human Rights Campaign Fund has urged other groups to follow suit.

The Hollywood Reporter has also notified the hotel
that it will no longer hold its annual Women in Entertainment breakfast there.

The Dorchester Collection is owned by Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah through the Brunei Investment Agency.

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